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American Indian Film Gallery

Cultures of Apache tribes and Hopi tribes

Emalie Schaefer, Author
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Cultures of Apache Tribes and Hopi Tribes


In Arizona, two of the major tribes are the Apache and the Hopi. These two tribes have left indelible marks on Arizona history as well as the history of the American South West. The Hopi and the Apache have become iconic of the region but this status does not truly represent the tribes. We have gathered together information about both of these tribes in order to give you a fuller understanding of these two tribes. We also wanted to bring awareness of the wonderful collection of resources available at the American Indian Film Gallery, though we encourage you to have your parents, guardians, or teacher look at the films before you given the age of many of these films. While this presentation is focused on these two tribes the resources here can help you learn about other Native American tribes.  

We want you to see these two tribes and to think about what makes them similar and what makes them different. Do they have access to the same natural resources? Does the climate of their different homelands have an impact on what is
available to them naturally and have an impact on what they have to do to make their dwellings, materials for crafts, and what food can be grown? Does the access to resources change how these tribes have traditionally lived? How did these tribes respond to first contact with the Spanish and later the Americans? Have these tribes been successful in navigating the changes of time? 

While the questions above are important to consider, remember many members of these tribes live very modern lives. While their locations limit access to some of the things to which you might have access, many live lives which are not so dissimilar to yours. We want you to consider in the questions above the traditional livelihood of these tribes. However, if you wish to compare traditional lifestyles to modern lifestyles we have provided a list of websites and books for you. We hope however that you will find this both informative and useful.

Below are the two major paths of this presentation. You can follow the path of either the Apache or of the Hopi. You can also navigate between the paths as you wish. Don't worry any way you go you'll end up at the same spot. We have made a few questions based off of the information on both the Apache and Hopi for you to answer. There are answers and some might just be found in the presentation, and your teacher can show you them, so don't worry. We are not trying to trick you but to get you thinking. We do have a suggested written and oral assignment, this assignment is at your teacher's discretion, though we do encourage doing it. And to do the assignment, we have provided you with further resources which we have found, and in respect of the Apache and Hopi tribes, we have limited these resources to the materials which these tribes wish for outsiders to have access.

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